Re "NRA vs. nominee for surgeon general," March 16

It's happening again. The health and safety of the American public is being held hostage by the National Rifle Assn., this time through its opposition to Dr. Vivek Hallegere Murthy's nomination as surgeon general for rightly recognizing that gun injury and death is a public health issue.

For too long, the NRA has dictated this nation's gun policy, or lack thereof. Guns are used to injure or kill about 100,000 people every year in the United States. Something that affects the health and well-being of that many Americans is a public health epidemic that requires a public health solution.

It is within the surgeon general's scope of work to address this issue, a fact that Murthy recognizes. Our elected leaders need the fortitude to tell the NRA to step aside.

Loren Lieb

Northridge

It's unbelievable and infuriating to read that the NRA has the gall and political influence to dictate who gets to be our next surgeon general.

Murthy is a Harvard- and Yale-educated internist who as a former emergency-room doctor has probably seen first-hand the damage that guns are doing in our society. Even if he didn't support tighter gun laws, he'd be more than qualified to be surgeon general.

This is more proof that we desperately need campaign-finance reform, to get the narrow-minded special interests out of the way of a functioning sound government for all.

Alejandro Diaz

Los Angeles

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